One Saturday, Ellen and I decided to have a go at baking cookies in her oven. She hadn't tried to use it after she had been scared off by an explosion some time before. However, we were able to clean it out and get it going, and we baked several dozen raisin and PNB cookies. Elena (center) and Justa came upstairs to Helen`s apartment to watch this amazing feat. No one in the house has had a working oven for some time, so this was a big event. The cookies were great, and Ellen had a great time passing them out to all and sundry in Copan. Later Elena asked me to try to repair her oven. We spent some time on a Sunday afternoon cleaning it and getting it going. We managed to eliminate the smoke, but found that the missing lower door allowed too much heat to escape. So the baking experiment was not a big success. Nevertheless, Ellen feels I could make a living fixing things like ovens in Copan.
One Sunday, Ellen invited me to accompany her on a 2 hour walk to visit some villages south of Copan. It was along a level road, so the going was easy. Ellen handed out treats as we went. Below are photos of the walk and of some of the kids we met.
This was our second outing, to a village called Llanetios in the mountains NE of Copan. Helen had befriended two families and wanted to take them Christmas presents.
It took about 30 minutes by 3 wheel taxi to get there - very steep and rough. Here we stopped to admire the view.
The first family. The parents were away. Helen says she is never quite sure how many are family and how many are cousins of friends. It just seems to be a big friendly bunch of kids.
The second family. Maria (light blue dress) is 19 and is very welcoming. She served us some tasty food (tamales) and showed me how to make a clay pot.
The sign to the pottery shop next to Maria`s home. This was built as a development project, to help the locals earn some money.
The village of Llanetios. A beautiful location. They have piped water, thanks to a governmental project. Soon they will get electricity. But the houses are simple and the people are clearly quite poor.
The one-roomed school house.